Conshohocken, PA Real Estate News

By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Case-Shiller Home Price Indices reported that national growth of home prices rose by 0.30 percent in November. Analysts said that slim inventories of available homes boosted home prices. Whether or not home price growth continues gaining speed depends on variables including supplies of homes for sale, affordability and home-buyer confidence in the economy.Mr. Craig Lazzara, managing director and global head of index investment strategy at S&P Dow Jones Indices said, “It is, of course, too soon to say whether this marks an end to the deceleration [of home price growth] or is merely a pause in the longer-term trend.”Phoenix Holds First Place In Home-Price Growth For 6 Consecutive MonthsCase-Shiller’s 20-City Home Price Index showed that all cities tracked reported year-over-year growth in...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reporting was slim due to the observance of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. The National Association of Realtors® reported on sales of previously owned homes and the Veterans Administration announced changes to its home loan programs. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and initial unemployment claims were also released.Sales Pace of  Pre-owned Homes Rose 3.60 Percent in DecemberThe sales pace of previously-owned homes jumped by 3.60 percent on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. December’s sales pace rose to 5.54 million sales. 5.35 million homes were sold on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis in November. Sales of new and pre-owned homes rose 10.60 percent year-over-year.The number of available homes for sale reached its lowest reading since the National Associat...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Owning a home comes with major responsibilities and also offers major questions. One of the biggest questions that people will have to answer is whether or not they want to take out a home warranty. In order to decide whether a home warranty is worth it, it is important to first understand what a home warranty is.What Is A Home Warranty?A home warranty is not the same thing as home insurance. First of all, homeowners insurance is something that is required to purchase a home in the first place. Home insurance is in place to protect the homeowner, and the lender, from disaster.In contrast, a home warranty is not required but might be offered by the lender or a third party. A home warranty is designed to cover the repairs that come with routine wear and tear on various home appliances. Th...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Anyone who has paid attention to the TV recently has likely seen a lot of commercials for something called a reverse mortgage. For those who might not know, a reverse mortgage is exactly that. In this option, people receive monthly payments from a lender in exchange for equity in their homes. In essence, this functions as an annuity.One of the major benefits of a reverse mortgage is that it can be used to cover the costs associated with long-term care. Over the next few decades, the number of elderly individuals in the United States is projected to double. For this reason, long-term care is projected to become a major expense.How Can A Reverse Mortgage Pay For Long-Term Care?Long-term care is one of the biggest unexpected expenses encountered by the elderly. Often, coinsurance associate...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reports included readings on public and private sector jobs, the national unemployment rate and weekly readings on mortgage rates and new unemployment claims.ADP: Private-Sector Job Growth Eases in DecemberPrivate-sector jobs increased by 202,000 jobs in December and exceeded expectations. November’s original reading of 60,000 new private-sector jobs was revised to 124,000 jobs.Three and six-month average private-sector job growth rates were 159,000 and 151,000 jobs, but these growth rates fell short of 2018’s average monthly job growth rate of 218,000 jobs added.Analysts said that private-sector job growth has settled into a more modest but steady pattern.Non-Farm Payrolls: Public and Private-Sector Job Growth Slower in DecemberThe Commerce Department reported 145,...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reports were limited due to the Christmas holiday. New home sales data was released along with a weekly reading on mortgage rates.Census Bureau: New Home Sales Hit Highest Level Since 1999Mortgage rates below 4.00 percent propelled the highest number of new homes sold since 1999. 719,000 new homes were sold on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis in November.Analysts expected November sales of new homes to reach 740,000 sales based on October’s original reading of 733,000 sales, but this reading was later revised to 710,000 sales.New home sales reported are based on a narrow range of data and subject to major revisions. Slim inventories of previously-owned homes for sale also boosted new home sales.The national median sale price for new homes was $330,800 in November ...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
A “seller’s market” happens when there are more potential buyers than homes for sale. In a seller’s market, people looking for a home may feel frustration and not easily find the home that they want. When they find a home for sale that they like, the seller of the home may receive multiple competitive offers at the same moment.The seller is in an excellent position when this happens. Sellers can pick from the purchase offers to choose the one they like the most. Even if an offer is the same as another one, sometimes it is not the offer chosen by a seller.Causes Of A Seller’s MarketSeller’s markets arise because a particular area is very desirable. There can also be limitations that do not allow any further development of residential properties in an area. Well-established neighborhoods ...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reports included readings from the National Association of Home Builders on housing markets; the National Association of Realtors® released data on sales of previously-owned homes and the Commerce Department released readings on housing starts and building permits issued. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released.NAHB: Builder Confidence Rises in DecemberAccording to the National Association of Home Builders, builder confidence in housing market conditions rose in December to an index reading of 76 as compared to November’s reading of 71. Any reading over 50 indicates that most home builders surveyed were confident about housing market conditions.Builder confidence in current market conditions rose seven points to an index reading of...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reports included readings on construction spending and multiple labor sector reports including private and public sector jobs and the national unemployment rate. Weekly reports on average mortgage rates and first-time jobless claims were also released.Construction Spending Falls 0.80 Percent in OctoberCommerce Department reports on construction spending said that spending fell by 0.80 percent to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of $1.29 million. Analysts expected construction spending to increase by 0.40 percent based on September’s original reading of 0.50 percent growth, which was later revised to -0.30 percent.Less construction of multifamily homes and apartments caused a decrease in October construction spending. Private construction spending fell by -1.00 perc...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic reporting included readings on inflation, testimony by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and new unemployment claims.Rising Gas Prices Fuel Jump in InflationConsumer inflation increased at its fastest pace in seven months according to the Consumer Price Index for October. Consumer prices rose 0.40 percent and exceeded analysts’ forecast of 0.30 percent and September’s reading of 0.00 percent inflationary growth.  Analysts attributed the jump in prices to rapidly rising gasoline prices.October’s reading for core inflation, which excludes fuel and food prices, supported this view. Core inflation grew by 0.20 percent in October, which matched expectations and exceeded September’s core inflation reading of 0.10 percent.Year-over-...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s scheduled economic news included the Federal Reserve’s survey of loan officers and the University of Michigan’s report on consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released.Fed Survey of Loan Officers Finds Banks Tightened Lending StandardsThe Federal Reserve’s survey of financial institutions found that lenders tightened standards for credit card and other consumer loan approval. Lending officials said that concerns over the economy drove decisions to tighten standards for new credit cards, auto loans, and personal loans.Lenders also tightened lending requirements for new borrowers in January and March. January’s revision to lending requirements was the strictest since 2009.Lending officials surveyed said that less tolerance for ...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Most people can’t pay for a home outright, so they finance it with a mortgage loan. 30-year mortgages are more conventional, but they also come with a significant interest price tag.People who have a stable career and the income to afford larger payments, or who are nearing retirement, may want to take out a 15-year mortgage. Here are some reasons to consider one.Save Money Over The Life Of The LoanThe total interest paid on a 30-year loan can be nearly as much as the principal. While it can be difficult to see the bigger picture when facing a mortgage payment that will be a good bit higher, consider this: Paying off a loan in 15 years versus 30 years will save tens of thousands of dollars in interest, and in some cases, as much as $100,000.Interest rates on 15-year mortgages are also t...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic news included readings on sales of new and previously-owned homes and consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and first-time jobless claims were also released.New Home Sales Dip in SeptemberCommerce Department readings indicated fewer sales of new homes than in August. 701,000 sales were reported in September on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis; 706,000 new homes were sold in August and analysts expected 700,000  sales of new homes.Sales fell by 0.70 percent month-to-month but were 15.50 percent higher year-over-year. September was the second time in 12 years that new home sales exceeded 700,000 in consecutive months.Sales of new homes were lower in three of four regions. Sales fell by -2.80 percent in the Northeast and were -3.80 percent lower in th...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
PMI, which is also called private mortgage insurance, is protect that the lender may ask the buyer to purchase. In the event that the buyer defaults on their home loan and the home enters foreclosure, the lender has a way to recoup their losses.While the lender may not ask everyone to purchase PMI, there are some situations where the lender may ask the buyer to purchase this insurance policy to qualify for the loan.Every lender is a little bit different; however, there are some trends throughout the industry. Most lenders ask the buyer to place a down payment of about 20 percent of the total price of the house. If the buyer is not able to put at least 20 percent down on a home, the loan is riskier for the lender. In this case, the lender may ask the buyer to purchase a PMI policy.The St...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic releases included readings on inflation, an essay from Dallas Federal Reserve President Robert Kaplan and the monthly consumer sentiment index. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released.Inflation Flat in SeptemberInflation did not change in September; August’s reading showed 0.10 percent growth, which matched the July reading. Falling gasoline prices caused the flat reading. Analysts said that cooling inflation may prompt Federal Reserve policymakers to cut the target Federal Funds interest rate range at their next meeting.The core inflation rate, which excludes volatile food and fuel sectors rose 0.10 percent in September; analysts expected 0.20 percent growth based on August’s month-to-month inflation rate of 0.30 percent growth.In...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
“Staging” a house means to prepare it for sale in ways that make it more attractive to potential buyers. Homeowners can do much of this staging work themselves and should get suggestions from their real estate agent. They can also hire a professional to do the staging work for them.Value-Added StagingA study of 4,200 sold homes, conducted by Home Staging Resource (HSR), found that 85% of the staged homes sold for 6% to 25% more than a home that was not staged.Forbes reports that 95% of staged homes sell in 11 days or less. This is 87% faster when compared to the time it takes, on average, to sell a home that is not staged.An average home sells for 10% to 20% less than the asking price. It may be even more beneficial to stage a home that would otherwise have to sell as a “fixer-upper.” W...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Many people are looking to buy homes, not across the street, not somewhere else in town, but in other parts of the country. The motivator for this is that there are significant differences in the median prices for home sales in different parts of America. This is not a result of the places being undesirable.Many of the places with excellent values in home prices are very desirable. In these nice cities, the lower prices are more about the local economy, the cost of living, and the availability of homes for sale.Popular Cities For RelocationA study done by REALTOR® identified the most popular cities that people search for when looking for a new home in another area that is different from where they currently live.The median home price in America is $226,800.Areavibes ranks American citie...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Condominium owners and buyers have previously been at a disadvantage when trying to use the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) support to get a home mortgage. Single-family homes could get better FHA mortgage deals than condominiums. In October 2019, this changes.New FHA Condominium FinancingAs of October 15, 2019, FHA loan availability is extended to condominium buyers. This is important news for first-time buyers who frequently purchase a condominium. First-time buyers appreciate FHA loans because they only require a very modest 3.5% down payment.FHA loans were strongly curtailed after the real estate market collapse in 2008. Since 2009, most condos did not qualify for FHA loans. The problem was that FHA loans require mortgage insurance and this insurance was only available for about 6.5...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Last week’s economic news included readings on construction spending, and labor reports on public and private sector jobs and the national unemployment rate. Weekly reports on new jobless claims and mortgage rates were also released.Construction Spending Ticks Up in AugustCommerce Department reporting on construction spending showed 0.10 percent growth in August as compared to a revised flat reading for July. Construction spending hit a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of  $1.29 trillion for August.  Analysts expected 0.40 percent growth, which was based on the original July reading of 0.10 percent growth.Residential construction spending rose 0.90 percent in August ; public construction spending rose 0.40 percent for the month. Factors impacting residential construction spending include...
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By Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563
(CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029)
Telecommuting has significantly changed the housing market. More people than ever before are working from home. Younger people are especially likely to do this and become part of what is called the “gig” economy. Many are working as freelancers or starting online businesses.Advantages Of Working From HomeThere are many advantages to working at home. It is less stressful. There is no commute. This saves money and is better for the environment. There may be lower income taxes because currently, the IRS allows a tax deduction of the expense of a home office. Homeworkers find clients online. They also can work from anywhere that has an Internet connection. There may be an opportunity to have a working vacation and keep their online presence going. They can maintain business efforts, perhaps...
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